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Grant prepared for Chelsea promotion a week ago

Avram Grant was ready to replace Jose Mourinho at Chelsea a week ago, it has been revealed.

The Daily Mail says in a sensational twist to the tale of Mourinho's departure, Grant contacted the boss of Israel's coaching set-up at the end of last week and said: "I need a Pro Licence - and I need it in a hurry."

Grant first made contact with Amnon Raz, Israel's equivalent of League Managers' Association chief John Barnwell, six months ago and asked about the procedure for a Pro Licence but decided against taking it any further.

There was a different tone about his latest call a week ago, according to informed Israel Federation sources, as he quizzed Raz about the quickest way of obtaining a certificate that is viewed as a necessity for managing in the Premier League.

Former Israel skipper Avi Nimni added: "His appointment may have surprised many people, but not me.

"I am in daily contact with Grant, and this move has been on the go for a long time.

"You have to be beside Abramovich and Grant to understand the connection between them."

Ex-Israel Under-18 coach Raz is due in London next week to discuss Grant's options and has also recruited Federation president Avi Luzon to try to hasten the qualification process.

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